News Archives - Earth Charter

Earth Charter activities in Mexico

The following are initiatives carried out by the Earth Charter Network in Mexico between April and May.

Oaxaca Carta de la TierraOaxaca:

On April 15, 2017, the 63rd Legislature of the State of Oaxaca approved the signing of the Earth Charter Endorsement.

In a public statement, the Legislator Paola Gutiérrez Galindo, President of the Permanent Commission on Ecology, explained the meaning of this endorsement, among others she said:

“A few days ago, I presented to the plenary of the LXIII Legislature of the State of Oaxaca the proposal to ENDORSE THE EARTH CHARTER, which was approved in a regular session on April 15. With this initiates a process of promotion and commitment to the principles and values of sustainable development, under the premise that the changes that we want to see happening should be promoted by the citizens.

This is why I invite all sectors of the population, especially my fellow Legislators to accompany me in the promotion of a more just, sustainable and peaceful Oaxacan society. ”

The endorsement will be signed in June 2017.

Aval Aguascalientes Carta de la TierraAguascalientes:

On May 4, 2017, several civil society organizations based in Aguascalientes, Mexico, endorsed the Earth Charter and pledged to assume with responsibility and constancy its principles. They also pledged to use this document as a guide and ethical framework for decision-making processes, in education programmes and as an inspirational reference in our quest towards a global society that is environmentally friendly, fair, sustainable and peaceful.

These are the organizations that endorsed the Earth Charter, and their representatives:

  • Instituto Mexicano de Estudios Pedagogicos y Posgrado, A.C. (IMEPP AC) firma  Gina Mireya Ventura Ramírez.}
  • Ecosistemica, A.C. firma  María Eugenia González Díaz
  • Equidad y Medio Ambiente. A. C. firma  Gerardo Tenorio López.
  • Colonia de Castores 10 Kaban Aguascalientes. firma Arturo Abraham Guerrero Quintero.
  • Aguas con la Bici A.C. Ma. de los Ángeles Patricia Castañeda Elias.
  • Natura Mundi A.C. firma Claudia R. Ramírez Rendón.
  • Conciencia Ecologica de Aguascalientes, A.C. firma Cristóbal Humberto Tenorio Izazaga.
  • Mujeres Pedaleando, A.C. firma María Teresa Campos Méndez.
  • Guardias Ambientales de Aguascalientes, A.C. firma Luis Cesar Flores Miranda.
  • Movimiento Ambiental de Aguascalientes, A.C. firma Guadalupe Castorena Hernández.

That same day, in the morning, the School “Comunidad Educativa La Tierra” also endorsed the Earth Charter in a ceremony where Mateo Castillo Ceja, Coordinator of the Earth Charter Mexican Network and a member of the EC International Council, offered a conference called: Educating for Life with the Earth Charter.

Later on, Mateo Castillo also offered another conference to students of the Autonomous University of Aguascalientes.

Find in this link a news article published in one of the local newspapers, about these endorsements and activities organized around the Earth Charter in Aguascalientes.

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Education for sustainable development and cities in Latin America and the Caribbean

IMG-20170426-WA0001The Earth Charter Center for Education for Sustainable Development was invited to participate in the Latin America and Caribbean Workshop on Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) and cities, organized by the Global Action Programme on ESD, which took place on 26-28 April 2017 in Villa María, Argentina.

This workshop was part of a series of regional workshops that have been taking place in all regions of the world, with the aim to sensitize about the integration of ESD at the local level, supporting the implementation of the sustainable development goals (SDGs).
The occasion helped participants to learn about different initiatives that municipalities and different institutions associated with local governments are doing to put in practice education for sustainability.

rgentina-Education-Sustainable-Development-citiesThe Earth Charter Center supported UNESCO in the identification of several participants, and during the event, Alicia Jimenez represented the Earth Charter and had different roles, such as moderating, speaking and facilitating several sessions.

 

In parallel, the Regional Workshop on Learning Cities was held, organized by the UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning. Although both events had their defined objectives, the idea was to seek synergies to promote ESD within the network of learning cities.

Villa María was the host city of this event. It is a city of 100,000 inhabitants with an advanced local government, which is putting into practice very interesting projects of education and citizenship empowerment, such as the Children’s Parliament. This initiative invites children to participate in democratic processes, and to implement projects of their interest with a budget that the Municipality gives them.

Argentina Learning Cities

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Earth Charter Affiliate speaks in UN General Assembly Dialogue on Harmony with Nature

Photo 3The Seventh Interactive Dialogue of the United Nations General Assembly on Harmony with Nature took place on Friday, 21 April 2017 under the Theme: Earth Jurisprudence.

The event counted with the participation of Professor Klaus Bosselmann, ECI Affiliate from New Zealand and Director, New Zealand Centre for Environmental Law, University of Auckland, who, as an Earth Jurisprudence expert, made a presentation on “The Next Step: Earth trusteeship”.

In Professor Bosselmann´s speach he made a proposal to “accompany the current SDG process with high-level ethical dialogue and promote the idea of nation-states as trustees for the Earth and that the UN should provide a forum for achieving that.”

Below you can find Professor Bosselmann´s intervention:

Interactive Dialogue of the General Assembly on Harmony With Photo 5Nature

Friday, 21 Apr 2017

Trusteeship Council, UN Secretariat Building, New York

Theme: Earth Jurisprudence

¨An Earth-centred worldview recognizes the intrinsic value of Nature; understands humans as fundamentally part of the natural world, that is, one life-form among many evolved from the same natural processes. It further recognizes that there are biophysical limits to human activity and that our socioeconomic systems are embedded in natural systems. In this worldview, human-Earth relationships are based on a symbiotic connection, are interconnected and are subject to the natural laws of the Universe.

Photo 4Indigenous peoples’ philosophies, spiritualities and traditional forms of knowledge worldwide express the understanding that human governance systems must be derived from the laws of the Earth and comply with them.

Experts from around the world working in the natural and social sciences similarly recognize the need for an evolved, holistic worldview that must be rooted in respect for Nature and in the interdependence of the well-being of humankind and of the Earth.

In order to forge a balanced, healthy relationship between human activity and the Earth, there is an urgent need for society to reconsider how it perceives and interacts with the natural world.

Photo 2Earth Jurisprudence recognizes that the Earth is the source of laws that govern life. It provides a cohesive framework reflecting the integrated nature of the world in which we live. And, as the source of laws that govern the community of life, Earth Jurisprudence also provides a cohesive framework underpinning many disciplines, weaving them together to create a more effective, holistic governance approach, one that reflects the integrated nature of the world in which we live.¨

In 2009, the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed 22 April as International Mother Earth Day. In so doing, Member States acknowledged that the Earth and its ecosystems are our common home, and expressed their conviction that it is necessary to promote Harmony with Nature in order to achieve a just balance among the economic, social and environmental needs of present and future generations. The same year, the General Assembly adopted its first resolution on Harmony with Nature.

Click here for more information

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University in Colombia celebrates Earth Day based on the Earth Charter

Foto 5By: Fredy Alonso Mercado Diaz, Teacher at University Antonio Nariño UAN-Sede Cartagena, Colombia.

Since the year 2015, at University Antonio Nariño (UAN) Headquarters in Cartagena, Colombia, we celebrate Earth Day on April 22nd, with several events taking place under the name: “Green Night at the University Antonio Nariño-UAN Sede Cartagena”.

However, since 2017, the events are based on the content of the Earth Charter, carrying out the third event of commemoration of this day, which we call “The Marketing of the Earth.”

Foto 3With a group of Marketing Management students, we took on the task of raising awareness among the academic community and with special guests from other universities, promoting the biggest supplier of our lives to everything we consume, with a product scheme, just as large corporations do with their goods and services.

Based on the principles of the Earth Charter, the event included the following activities:

 

Foto 11-Earth Supply: Everything we consume comes from the Earth.
By Marketing Management student, José Milanés
2- Humanity Demand: How do we pay?
A) Responsibilities -María José Barreto- Marketing Management student
B) Attitudes -Sindy Duran- Marketing Management student
C) Principles- Bertha Eucaris García- Marketing Management student
D) Values-Carmen Cano Orosco- Marketing Management student
3-Commitment: Signing of promissory note of commitment to Mother Earth. Wilmer Castrillón – Marketing Management student
4- Ceremony of planting trees with supplies donated by the company Aguas de Cartagena

It is important to note that, based on the Earth Charter, we generated a good marketing of the Earth, especially creating awareness of the care we must give to our universal heritage and emulating that, just as every day we pray to the Lord, we must also humanize our relationship with our MOTHER EARTH.

 

 

 

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“Seeds of Hope” exhibition in Ghana and Paris

“Seeds of Hope” exhibition, inspired by the Earth Charter and produced by SGI International, was presented in two events between March and May 2017: at the University of Ghana in Legon and in the Soka Cultural Association in Paris.

GHANA

Guest post By: Dolittle Kwaku Sintim-Aboagye – General Director, Soka Gakkai International  Ghana

Miss Afra Foli, Earth Charter Representative delivering her speechSGI Ghana conducted the “Seeds of Hope” exhibition at the University of Ghana, Legon on 18th and 19th March, 2017.

Delivering the welcome address at the opening ceremony, Nana Frema Boaitey-Azu of SGI-Ghana, introduced the exhibition as a joint initiative of Soka Gakkai International and Earth Charter International. She indicated that the exhibition uses the “Learn, Reflect and Empower” formula outlined in SGI President Daisaku Ikeda’s 2002 proposal on education for sustainable development, which is a tool for the UN Decade of Education for Sustainable Development.

His Excellency Tirso Dos Santos – Country Director of UNESCO- Ghana, Miss Afra Foli, representative from Earth Charter International, Professor Atukwei Okai, Secretary General of Pan African Writers’ Association (PAWA) and Dahveed Nelson representative from African Hebrew Israelite of Jerusalem delivered Key note addresses.

DSC_0351Recognizing the Soka Gakkai International (SGI) as a key partner in managing the environment and ensuring sustainability, the Ghana Country Director of UNESCO pledged the support of UNESCO in working with SGI-Ghana to promote environmental and sustainable development.  He concluded his address by calling on all members of the society to support the works of the SGI, in particular, the “Seeds of Hope” exhibition.

Miss Afra Foli expressed how proud she felt to be part of the target group which SGI was reaching out to. She mentioned that the Earth Charter International was concerned with moving to sustainable ways of living for sustainable human development. She finally encouraged all youth to have a “good look” at the “Seeds of Hope” exhibition, and further take to heart its core message of empowerment.

DSC_0417 (1)

Immediately after the opening ceremony, Miss Afra Foli and the Country Director of UNESCO-Ghana cut the ribbon to formally open the exhibition to viewers who thronged the venue to view the displayed panels.

On display were 24 key panels depicting themes on inspiring, learning, reflecting and empowering individuals to take action for the protection and sustainability of their immediate environment. Another panel on the pollution of water bodies in Ghana was also displayed.

DSC_0425One of the panels featured Wangari Maathai, an Earth Charter Commissioner and 2004 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, who took action at the local level promoting recovery of endangered species and ecosystems. The Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, who was concerned about the receding rate of Kenya’s original forest, encouraged rural women to plant trees so they could improve the land through water retention, reduce soil erosion and earn a small income for their families.

All guests who viewed the panels were impressed as they could at least associate with one or more panels which had been a concern to them, and meant a lot to them. The exhibition logged a little over 3,000 viewers.

PARIS

graines-d-espoir-2017-gIn Paris, the “Seeds of Hope” exibition was launched in collaboration with Soka Gakkai International (Sgi), on 3 May. Guests including Dr. Jean Paul Durand as well as Ann and Julien along with 30 SGI members were participating at the opening to celebrate the launch! The exhibit will be open to the public from 9 May to 30 June in the Association Culturelle Soka De France in Paris. The exhibition highlights the potential of one person to change his environment to act for a better world.

Information: Exposition Seeds of Hope- 9 May- 30 June 2017
Where: ACSF, 42 BIS rue Sarrette, 75014 Paris, métro Alésia.
· Free Entrance
· Hours: Monday- Friday from 14h- 18h30
Saturdays 13 May, 20 May, 10 June, 17 June: from 10h-18h
Closed Sundays and Holidays

PAR_5626PAR_5691

 

 

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Advertising for Good: Nominations open for Ethicmark Awards 2017

Ethic logo 2Nominations for the 2017 EthicMark® Awards are open until June 23, 2017, for ads and media campaigns that “uplift the human spirit and society.” The winners will be announced at the 28th annual SRI Conference on Sustainable, Responsible, Impact Investing, November 1–3, 2017, in San Diego, CA.

The nomination period is open to ads and media campaigns. These can be produced by businesses, nonprofit organizations or individuals. Nominations can be submitted on the EthicMark® website at: www.ethicmark.org.

The EthicMark® Awards seek to transform advertising by demonstrating the power of media campaigns to further both the public interest and legitimate private interests.

“We expect our 2017 Annual awards to highlight the power of advertising and global media to enlighten the public and inspire companies to new levels of creative responsible marketing worldwide,” said Hazel Henderson, president of Ethical Markets Media, founder and co-chair of the EthicMark® Awards. The 2016 winners were the Do Right Initiative, from Tata Capital in India, and “Give Mom Back Her Name”, a UN Women campaign from Egypt.

The EthicMark® Awards recognize advertising that helps solve the pressing social, political, and environmental challenges of our time. The theme for the 28th annual SRI Conference is #AllinForImpact, celebrating the idea that investment capital can catalyze the shift to a more socially equitable and environmentally sustainable economy.

The annual EthicMark® Awards are co-sponsored by Ethical Markets Media, LLC, and the World Business Academy, whose president Rinaldo S. Brutoco, as co-chair said, “Ethical advertising is a critical characteristic of a healthy, long-term sustainable corporation that honors what it sells and the deeper values of its customers.”

The Awards are in partnership with The SRI Conference and ESPM, one of Brazil’s premier institutions of higher education in communication, marketing, and business.

Watch this video for the 2016 EthicMark Award Winners:

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Earth Charter Youth Group to Advisor to the Ministry of Environment: Esther Kelechi Agbarakwe of Nigeria

esther-kelechi-agbarakweMy name is Esther Abgarakwe. I´m from Nigeria. My friends call me ¨Esther Climate¨—it´s a long story! I started an Earth Charter Youth Group in 2006 in Calabar. At that time, the Earth Charter was active in Nigeria but there was not much youth participation. It really pushed me to lobby and advocate for youth participation on environmental issues.

At that time, I participated in an Earth Charter E-Glo (Earth Charter Global Learning Opportunity) training programme that taught me a lot about social media. My first contact with blogging was through that programme and my blog won me a scholarship to go to a Conference in Scotland. That was my first travel abroad experience, and from that conference I met amazing people like the Elders. I asked one of them an interesting question in that forum and that sort of got me remembered around the world.

Since then, I have been working with the Elders for many years, now with a project call the Elders + Youngers project. It has been the biggest project of my life because I´ve gotten to work with four amazing people: Mary Robinson, Gro Harlem Brundtland, Desmond Tutu, and Fernando Cardoso.

esther-kelechi-agbarakwe-climate-actionFrom the blogging I learned from E-Glo, I´ve continued blogging a lot. Blogging has given me the opportunity to talk about so many things I like. One of the micro-blogs I use a lot is Facebook. On Facebook, I changed my time to ¨Esther Climate¨ because I wanted to interrupt conversations about politics among young people and intercept that with environmental issues and climate change—so I changed my name to ¨Esther Climate.¨

And the name stuck. When people see it, they pause and think, ¨Why Esther Climate?¨ And that´s an opportunity to change someone´s mindset, to raise awareness or improve knowledge in someone around environmental issues. They would ask the question about the name, and I would reply ¨Yes—this is what it means…¨ and then talk to them about climate change.

My favorite Earth Charter Principle is the first one- Care for the Community of Life. I love it because it makes me feel more connected to the human species and everything that is on Earth—whether it is a fly, a human being, or a plant. The Earth Charter was really my first entry into environmental issues. Its principles expanded my mind to see things differently (unusual as it may be where I come from). It could really interest you to know that Earth Charter covers a whole wide range of issues, from faith to humanity.

esther-kelechi-agbarakwe-workingNow I work as an Advisor to the Minister of the Environment. This is my career now; I think I´ll do environmental work for the rest of my life. And the [Earth Charter] Principle is still there.

When I was invited to join the Minister of the Environment as an Advisor, it was a dream come true. I accepted it of course! [Deputy Secretary General-Designate Amina J Mohammed] is an amazing person and [this job] has been the best thing of my life. I can see hands on the change I wanted to see happen. I’m the only young advisor—but it´s [youth] participation. We are moving from rhetoric to action. Young people have a lot of offer—they have experience, they have a vision, they are creative, and can do a lot!

Right now, I do a lot with technology which plays a big role in my work in terms of mobilizing young people—not only mobilizing them, but also empowering them, connecting them to resources, and giving them an opportunity to be informed on issues that affect them. In the next 40 years, they may have to lead.

I do all the creative stuff in the Ministry—communications, stake holders engagement, traveling around to all these Conferences to help to lobby because I understand the dynamics.

esther-kelechi-agbarakwe-radio-interviewIt gives me renewed hope that young people are now at the table, not just on the menu. The government recognizes their importance now. I remember when we used to scream and shout ¨I want to be involved! I want to be involved!¨ Now we are involved. That´s the biggest thing that´s happening for us.

I have my Earth Charter in Action book in my room. I don´t joke with it. I read it a lot. It reminds you where you´re going. It gives you that inspiration to keep going because it´s hard sometimes. It´s fun a lot of the time, but you always get to a crossroad at some point in your life. You have to look back and see that we´ve come a long way.


This interview of Esther Kelechi Agbarakwe was conducted in November 2016 by Earth Charter International Youth Projects Coordinator, Sarah Dobson, at COP22 in Marrakech, Morocco. The content has been edited for clarity and flow.

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AASHE endorses the Earth Charter!

AASHE Endorsement Earth CharterWe are happy to announce that the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) has endorsed the Earth Charter.

Established in 2005, AASHE is comprised of over 900 members across 48 U.S. states, 1 U.S. Territory, 9 Canadian provinces and 20 countries.

We asked Julian Dautremont-Smith, Director of Programs of AASHE, to share with all of us what is the meaning of the Earth Charter for them and why it was important to endorse it. This is what he shared:

AASHE is pleased to endorse the Earth Charter.

We greatly value the Charter’s comprehensive approach to sustainability, especially the inclusion of social and economic justice, democracy and peace along with ecological integrity.

We have a similarly holistic understanding of sustainability and refer the Earth Charter as a key document in understanding sustainability in our Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System (STARS), a self-reporting framework used by hundreds of colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance. For example, a course is counted as being sustainability-inclusive if it contributes towards realizing one or more of the principles outlined in the Earth Charter.

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Tribute to Henriette Rasmussen (1950-2017)

Henriette RasmussenIt is with deep regret that we announce the passing away of Henriette Rasmussen, former Member of Parliament and Minister of Education and Culture of Greenland.

As a member of the Earth Charter Commission, Henriette was very active in the Earth Charter Initiative since early 1997. Henriette was a specially warm and friendly human being. Together with Finn Lynge, she has brought light and a unique contribution to the Earth Charter drafting process, underlining the perspective from the Indigenous People throughout. Once the Earth Charter drafting process was over, she tirelessly continued to bring in the Earth Charter to Greenland, working hard in the translation and publication of materials, infusing it in radio and education programmes and projects she was involved. She was a bridge between the Global Earth Charter movement and the Inuit people and culture, especially within the Inuit Circumpolar Conference.

The Earth Charter International pays tribute to Henriette for her life. She will be missed. We are very grateful for her grace, good energy and efforts, which were not in vain, as it inspired the lives of many.

In this link you can find one of the articles she wrote.

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Earth Charter presentation in California by Professor Sam Crowell

Photo workshop Sam

 

On February 20, Sam Crowell presented an introduction to the Earth Charter to almost 150 people from a local community action group in Idyllwild, California. Idyllwild is a small mountain village in southern California that is surrounded by national and state forests, with snow-capped peaks rising to almost 11,000 feet in elevation. It is a community noted for its commitment to the arts and to the environment.

 

Photo 1

The group, “Indivisible Idyllwild,” was formed to engage the Idyllwild community in an on-going dialogue around issues and policies affecting the poor and disenfranchised, sustainability, and social equality of women, LGBT, and immigrants – all impacted by the rhetoric and mandates of the Trump administration. The group’s mission is to work toward “sustainable economic, environmental, and social justice for all,” focusing first on the community and region, but also joining with others to advance these causes nationally.

Sam pointed out that the Earth Charter offers a compatible vision that emphasizes respect for diversity, care for the environment and all communities of life, a call to social and economic justice, and the commitment to peace and non-violence.  Sam suggested that the Earth Charter principles and values can offer two significant things for the group: 1) inspiration and guidance for engaged action; and 2) a planetary vision that connects what is done locally to a shared vision of peoples around the world.

Foto SamLocal efforts make a difference. When the energy of those actions is combined with a planetary vision of love, care, and compassion, then it is amplified in positive and profound ways. Finding a role for the Earth Charter in these contexts makes the Charter relevant to today’s world. “Let ours be a time remembered for the awakening of a new reverence for life, the firm resolve to achieve sustainability, the quickening of the struggle for justice and peace, and the joyful celebration of life.”

For the seventh time, Sam will be co-facilitating with Mirian Vilela a master class on Education, Ethics, and Values for Sustainability: Transformative Teaching and Learning with the Earth Charter at the Earth Charter Center in Costa Rica, on July 3 – 7, 2017.

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